Facebook is the social media platform I’ve personally seen the most benefit from and it's the most popular. It's important to understand the different opportunities for driving traffic on Facebook-- it's not just about your personal profile.
On Facebook, you're going to take advantage of creating pages, starting and joining groups, running Facebook ads, and more. Facebook allows you to be incredibly targeted and you can grow your following fairly rapidly if you have the right strategies.
Many people check in to Facebook several times per day. It's definitely a site you need to pay attention to if you want to funnel a lot of traffic to your own properties.
Using Facebook for Traffic
There are so many different strategies you can use to leverage traffic from Facebook. I'm going to briefly focus on each of the parts of Facebook you can use to funnel traffic to your own properties. You might want to focus on just one of these avenues first and then move on to others as you build your confidence with the platform.
First, know that Facebook is one of the most heavily trafficked websites in the world. It's become a way of life for many people. They wake up in the morning and check their Facebook newsfeed-- repeating the process several times per day. People in your niche are interacting with one another and other authority figures right now. You may as well step into that avalanche of traffic and direct more of it toward yourself.
Pages: You can get traffic by starting a Facebook page. Your page can be specifically about your brand or company. A really great strategy is to create a page about a topic that's really interesting and enticing or exciting for people in your niche. It's not brand-specific as far as the title, but it's going to attract "likes" from people who aren't already familiar with your brand and wouldn't like the page otherwise.
Groups: I love this strategy and have done well with it. People love to be part of a group. You can create a group that's related to a hot topic or need within your niche. People can freely join this group to share information, learn, interact with one another, and even get personal help from you. You won't directly advertise much, but this will grow your authority and eventually give you direct access to hundreds or even thousands of highly targeted followers you can get into your funnel away from Facebook as well as on.
Profile: You won't do much, if any, advertising on your personal Facebook profile. In fact, you're not allowed to. But, you can still share information from your page, link to your blog, and so on. This is only important if you are "friends" on Facebook with people in your niche. Otherwise, don't include this as part of your strategy.
Ads: Facebook has a wonderful paid advertising system. It's even more targeted than Google Adwords. You can run ads to an extremely targeted and narrow group of people, giving you an incredible return on your investment.
Optimize Your Facebook Posts
You can't just post without thinking on Facebook. You should have a strategy for what you're posting and when. People who get frustrated with Facebook tend to have that experience because they haven't planned ahead. One of the best things you can do, in addition to planning your posts, is to optimize them.
You may or may not be aware that Facebook has an algorithm for what it shows. Just because someone "likes" your page doesn't mean it's going to show up in their newsfeed. It has a better chance if it's a really popular post or if they regularly like or comment on your material.
This is why it can be really frustrating when you're first starting out. Luckily, there are things you can do to have a better chance of success with Facebook pages and your posts. For instance, when you post a photo, post the photo with a description (and link) in the status update. Don't do it the opposite way-- posting the link to pull in the photo. Your message will show up with the photo whenever it's shared if you do it the first way I described.
Encourage people to regularly contribute. Post about things they're passionate about so they'll pay more attention to your page. You want your page to be so interesting they don't want to miss a day of your posts. George Takei's Facebook page is an example of this. It's not really a marketing page, but some of the concepts hold true. Entertain and delight your audience and they'll share and like your stuff and make you really popular.
Also, there are several pages where you can add a link to your website on Facebook. You can add it to the about page, milestones, descriptions, and more. It's shocking how many times I'll be interested in learning more about a page or a business but they haven't really provided any links or descriptions to help me learn more about them. Please optimize your profile and posts-- it can pay off for you big time and help you get more traffic.
Creative Facebook Strategies
There are many creative and unique ways you can use Facebook, in addition to the methods I've already described. You've no doubt seen the various popular Facebook games and apps. That can be one avenue to additional exposure and traffic, if that suits your business model. You don't have to rely on games alone-- there are certain ways you can design useful apps people will want to use-- and they'll give you their email address in the process.
You can use tools like Shortstack.com to create apps, run contests, and more to grow your reach on Facebook. You can run giveaways, collect email addresses, and really engage your audience in a cool way. Tabsite.com offers another way to run contests and sweepstakes. Yet another option is ActionSprout.com. Check out tools like these and others you find that will delight and engage your audience to help you build a great following, fast.
Your overall Facebook strategy should focus on getting people on your email list, of course. It's great to create pages, groups, apps, and things like that, but who knows where Facebook is going to be in 5 years or 10 years. If it keeps going like it is, it will continue to be huge. But even if it doesn't, you're going to win if you always have in mind that Facebook is a means to an end.
Brainstorm ways you can funnel traffic from Facebook to your very own email list. In fact, make this your mission whenever you use a tactic to get traffic. When you have an email list, you can drive traffic to your website and offers whenever you want to.
Paid Facebook Marketing
Facebook ads are phenomenal. I'd even go as far as to say that never before, not even with Google Adwords, has it been possible to target your advertising as well as you can with Facebook ads. Facebook also makes it easy to get started with paid ads, with little to no risk.
Before you play around with setting up a Facebook ad, it's helpful to figure out what you're going to advertise. I recommend you advertise your Facebook page. Get some good content (and ideally some likes) on your Facebook page before you move to this step. But really, you can use Facebook ads to give your new page a great boost that will attract organic likes and interactions that help you go far beyond what you paid for.
It's important to be really targeted with Facebook ads. You want to capture that traffic right away-- which is why you probably don't want to send them straight to your website. You want to give them something easy to do-- like liking your page. Then, you can interact with them, make them a fan of yours, and eventually get them to move on over to your email list and website.
Facebook makes the process really simple. Go ahead and check out the advertising section of Facebook now, and go through the motions as if you were going to set up a live ad. This is a case where you'll learn a lot by doing. Facebook allows you to target its users by things like age, gender, education, other pages liked, interests, and more. They even tell you how many users you're likely targeting once you set your parameters.
Then, you can set your bids and your maximum budget per day. It's hard to go wrong when you start off with a small budget and start to see those likes coming in. And, if your ad does well, you'll probably end up paying less per bid.
It is important to set up an attractive ad people will want to click on. Analyze the ads you see on your Facebook timeline right now. Why do you think those ads are showing up for you? What kind of pictures are they using? Which ones are really interesting to you? Then, you can figure out what kind of picture and language you want to use for your ad.
Viral Facebook Marketing
What does viral marketing mean specifically for Facebook? On Facebook, people love to share posts and photos that mean something to them. Sometimes, it's something mysterious or moving.
People will share things because:
· It made them emotional
· It taught them something new
· They are really invested in that topic already
· They have friends who would be interested in it
· It made them curious
· Sometimes, all of the above!
Whenever you create a post, video, or image to share on Facebook, make sure you hit on at least one of the above points so you have a higher chance of getting your image shared.
It's worth nothing that posts and stories from sites like Buzzfeed, Viralnova, and Upworthy are really popular and get shared like crazy. Analyze why that is. Usually, they use some sort of clickbait to make it happen. What would make sense for your niche?
Your Plan for Dominating Facebook
It's time to develop a plan that's going to help you dominate Facebook. When you put all the pieces together, Facebook will be a tool that will help you drive a ton of visitors to your website so you can build a list, become an authority, and make more sales.
If you've never marketed on Facebook before, now's the time to get started. It's really not that difficult and can even be fun. It's a good social media platform to get started with when it comes to driving traffic, because you'll likely get the best results from it.
Start out by paying attention to what others in your niche are doing. What do they share on Facebook? What do they name their pages and groups? How do they engage their followers? Success leaves clues.
Then, create your own Facebook group and page. Try your hand at paid Facebook ads. Do whatever you need to do to expand your reach on Facebook. Note that it can take time to build a following here, but the results will pay off for you big time.
Speed things up by paying for exposure, by sharing content that has a good chance of going viral, and by really interacting and being present on your pages and groups. If you provide quality and an experience people can't get anywhere else, people are going to flock to you.